I did not make this headline up
On the big version you can see what Callihan was talking about when he mentioned a little "strip": there are teeny block Ms on the inside and outside of the back collar. Tentative thumbs up from me; they'll probably look fine on the players.
So, Callihan is correct and didn't see something unofficial. Let's revisit the road jerseys:
The away jerseys have a thin maize piping straight across the chest. There also have a small maize strip on the back of the collar that says Michigan in blue. [he would later clarify that the strip is the block M thing above -ed]
The West Virginia-esque roadies from earlier were a false alarm, it seems.
Fixes. I've created a Crude Bug Tracking page, which can be found under "useful stuff" on the nav bar. It contains all known bugs and feature requests, plus a list of stuff I've fixed. The latest fixes:
- you don't have to preview comments or message board posts anymore
- comment threading options enabled for message board
- ticket ads now less ugly
- Brian @ AOL posts now visible to plebes
- message board restyled so it doesn't bleed into the right sidebar
If you're sending a bug in (which should be done whenever there is a bug SUPPORT THE CAUSE), do me a favor and check the page to see if it's listed or not. Also, if I missed anything in the whirlwind last few days, please remind me.
Solicitation. Also, I'm not married to "diaries" as the name of the things you see on the right sidebar. If you've got anything better, let me know.
The home uniform has not changed with the exception of the logo and the away uniform has been modified slightly in comparison to the Nike design that has been worn the past few seasons. The uniforms were approved last fall and have been in production well in advance of the hiring of Coach Rich Rodriguez.
This contradicts both the women's academy jerseys (road jerseys only slightly different) and the UMGoBlue thread (home jerseys untouched) referenced earlier today in exactly the ways most Michigan fans would want those data points to be contradicted, so it is undoubtedly accurate by fiat.
At this point we should probably just wait for the damn things to come out.
I got my philosophy. Bo Schemblogger has some notes from a recent coaching clinic that are basically a bulleted version of Rodriguez's offensive philosophy. I actually found the Magee bullets more interesting:
-- 1. make defenses defend the entire field ... QB has presnap and post snap reads
-- 2. Always play at multiple tempos to keep defense off balance and control their substitution patterns
-- 3.make defense prepare for dual threat QB, both run and pass
-- 4. EXECUTION- You want a simple, not predictable offense (most of you should love this one, LOL).
-- 5. Execute your base plays to perfection: Reps and Reps, and more reps, get good at something!
-- 6. numbers game
----- a. 1st key number is 1 or 2 safeties. This is from my personal experience, this read is the single most important in this offense ... it tells you what OLBers and CBs are going to do. All 3 Coaches, RR, MaGee, and Frey, said the OLBers are the most dangerous defenders to this offense
------ b. How many defenders in box is next read
-- 7. Create best angles to block, both linemen and SEs
-- 8. And the final one - Find Empty Grass!
I bolded four things for two different reasons. Four and five are bolded because the emphasis on execution is something most decidedly old in the context of Michigan football. These are the things that Charlie Weis has no idea how to do.
Two and eight are new. Eight is a pithy three-word summary of the spread 'n' shred. Two is something I'm excited about not because ramping tempo up and down will have that much of an effect on the game, but because it's another indication the staff is looking for an edge wherever it can get one.
This was the theory expounded in the post Northwestern's ballboys: Rich Rodriguez is an expert at taking limited resources and stretching them. From Glenville to Tulane to Clemson to West Virginia he has taken less and done more, and for most of this time he has been the head of the pyramid. Now he has more.
Por ejemplo. Bruce Feldman's latest article for ESPN the magazine probably doesn't have anything in it you don't already know, but it's an impeccably-written overview of the goings on. Relevant to our Unified Theory of Rodriguez is this passage:
Still, the new staff knew they'd get a better read on guys at Rodriguez's spring practices. The tempo change was dramatic. "If Bo could see these practices, he'd love it," says Jim Brandstatter, a lineman on the 1969 team. "It's eerily similar to the culture shock when Bo took over. They're being physical. They hit. They wear pads every day."
Among the new Michigan mandates: Practices double as conditioning (no walking-even linemen sprint into stances), and a QB is live in drills until he proves in a real game that he can handle pressure.
...or the OL is so sieve-like it gets him hurt.
Snark aside, I hadn't really considered the impact of the high tempo in practice that way. I had just figured it was a way to make the most of your limited hours. It is that; it's also yet more conditioning for guys who are running everywhere. The thing that leapt out at me from the Rodriguez paraphrase linked above: "conditioning is the most underrated aspect of football." Insert "eeee" here.
Etc.: Dex is ripping off the Dugout to good effect in the diaries, and QB Waggle tackles Michigan's NFL draft class of 2007. This Smart Football post on pass protection is pure football nerd porn. I've ripped Tom Deinhart before, but his preview of M for Rivals is shockingly accurate, like "mentions Marell Evans correctly" accurate. GS has a super recap of Mario Manningham's career.
Kevin Grady mug shot:
Why? DUI. Obviously not a stellar moment in Grady's life but his first misstep; likely a short suspension and then a return to normal service. "Normal service" in this case has been three yards followed by a fumble, but hey, you recover those fumbles and it's second and seven and if you're USC that's time to play the V song.
Fulmer cup projection: one point, Michigan's first of the Rodriguez era.
These were the uniforms bestowed upon attendees of the Women's Football Academy this summer, and their relation to West Virginia's vaguely chintzy duds did not go unremarked upon or unlamented. I phrased the post title as a question ("is this the ne road jersey?") despite the clear authenticity of the photos because it seemed highly improbable that Michigan would sign off on a pretty dramatic departure from their classic white away jerseys. At least, that's what I hoped.
That hope lives. Beauford Bixel -- a nom de plume up there with Orson Swindle -- of State of the Game has alertly picked up on a thread over at Michigan fansite/message board UMGoBlue.com featuring the uniform impressions of Phil Callihan, the site's founder. (Side note: Drew Montag, a UMGoBlue columnist, actually registered "mgoblog.com" two months before I started the blogspot version and, after two years and considerable friendly pestering, gave me the domain for free. They are Friends of Blog.) Callihan says he's seen the official jerseys and they are like so:
The home jerseys have a maize block "M" on the shoulder, the number is a little thicker and seems to be placed a little higher than on past jerseys. There's also a small (1/4 inch wide by 1-2 inch) vertical maize strip running down from the collar that has Michigan in blue. [Callihan would later correct himself, saying there is a block M on the strip. -ed]
The away jerseys have a thin maize piping straight across the chest. There also have a small maize strip on the back of the collar that says Michigan in blue.
Both have a small Adidas logo on the front.
There's the requisite panic and hasty, speculative photoshopping in the aftermath, with various people declaring their completely hypothetical outrage or joy over an ultimately trivial matter. It's basically a microcosm of the internet, and it's pretty awesome. We'll find out what they actually look like in around two weeks, and there will be a great TCP/IP howl for three days before we forget about it.
Add another 1.2 million subscribers to the BTN pile:
For sports fans, Verizon is launching three new HD sports channels.Verizon has always placed a high priority on providing all major sports programming and offering as much as possible in HD.
The company has now added top college basketball and football action with the Big Ten Network, which will be available in both standard- and high-definition.
Verizon was the last alternative (fiber/satellite) provider to sign on; now it's just Charter, Time Warner, and Mediacom left.
The basketball camp came and went without the blessed event -- a commit from CA PG Darius Morris -- beleaguered Michigan basketball fans have been pining for. The articles on the premium sites($) remain extremely positive, however, and Morris plans to decide within a month or two. Keep an eye out to see if he takes any more visits. If he doesn't, he will commit.
Meanwhile, freshmen are on campus and working out. The camp was open to the public, so respected internets poster MHoops1 took the opportunity to scout Stu Douglass...
1. Stu Douglass has a lot of tools--more than I thought. He's got a very quick release, range way beyond the NBA 3 point line, moves extremely well without the ball, and uses screens very nicely, passes well, can handle it enough to bring the ball up against pressure from smaller, quicker guards, and, while not a great athlete, was not getting overwhelmed by quickness on the defensive end. The question, quite simply, is shot selection. When he's square, he's a very, very good shooter, and under any circumstances, he spreads the floor--Terry Mills was yelling at the team he was coaching "He can shoot it from there" when Stu came across half court. The problem is that he does shoot it from there sometimes, and he also sometimes shoots it from positions that only a contortionist could love. He HAS to become less of a gunner. If he does, he could be a very good player in the Big Ten. If he doesn't, and guys like Manny, Deshawn and LLP lose good shots because Stu is chucking up bad ones, he'll be a detriment. It's as simple as that.
...and Zach Novak:
2. Zack Novak is a very efficient player. He's a good shooter from range, plays with his head up all the time, which permits him to see the floor and pass extremely well, and can shot fake, take the ball to the hole, and use his body to shield defenders and finish against much bigger, more athletic kids. He's also a pretty good rebounder in traffic, and moves very well without the ball. The biggest problem Zack has, at this time, is not the athleticism thing--he's not fast, but he's not as slow as some have claimed--but rather lack of handling skills. He can put it on the floor to drive off the wing, but is not real good out front if pressured before he's comfortable with the ball and what he's going to do, and you wouldn't really see him as a guy who's going to be an extra handler against pressure. His shot release is decent, but not nearly as quick as Stu's. Simply put, unless/until he gets better handles, he's a slightly undersized 3--really a point forward--with decent, but not great athleticism. I have no doubt that he can play in the conference because he is so fundamentally skilled and savvy, but to reach his potential, his ballhandling needs to improve.
The initial impressions -- MHoops1's scouting report has been echoed by other observers with little dissent -- contradict the months of speculation that had Novak a potential early contributor and Douglass an iffy role player.
Check out the rest of that thread while it still lives for further insight on the team this year. Sounds like the idea is to move Harris to small forward and try to live with Anthony Wright as a backup four, which would free up a lot of time at SG: advantage Douglass. Arizona transfer Laval Lucas-Perry will be eligible midseason; expectations are he will quickly supplant Grady as the starting point guard.
(Link via UMHoops.)
The first bump of a diary post. I cosign on this general approach to tackling the site. As a forinstance: in the post about bug tracking yesterday there were a few folks posting links to SMQB and elsewhere; these should probably go on the message board now.
Okay people, so now that Brian has brought us MGoBlog 3.0 I see that many of us are confused about the difference between Diaries, and the MGoBoard, and comments, and why Ninja quite frequently wanders around pantless in public. I thought I'd make an attempt at clarifying some of the confusion, and throwing a couple of ideas out there and seeing what sticks.
So without further ado, I give you MGoComenting for Ridiculous Idiots Who Waste Too Much Time on This Damn Site Which (Amazingly Enough) Has Not Yet Rendered Us Unemployed.
So, here we are with all these options. Brian Cook, or the MGoMafiaDon as he may be called, has given us an updated site with options galore. What's a kinda sane person with an unhealthy obsession with all things Michigan to do? Here's one humble man's ideas:
- DIARIES: This is your own little area of MGoBlog. It gives you the ability to have your own tangential mini-blog, your own little cubby hole in the MGoUniverse to do with what you will. Want a spot to to display your photoshopped pictures of Charlie Weis making love to a chocolate cake? Go for it. Want a gallery of your favorite in-game pics? Here you go. A list of the recruits you'd most like to see us sign? That can go here too. Personally, I'll be using it as a place to list where Kate Beckinsale and I will register for wedding gifts when she finally leaves her husband and decides to become Ninja's sugar-momma. In related news, people can comment on your diary entries much like we can coment on Brian's posts. So feel free to tear down one man's dream of having a beatiful, intelligent woman support his MGoHabit at the bottom of this one. And I hope you feel good about yourself when I'm crying myslelf to sleep tonight.
- MGOBOARD: This is the spot for discussions, basically about anything you'd like. Think McGuffie lacks top-end speed and you'd like to get flamed for it? This is your spot. Interested in talking Tigers? Feel free to make a thread here. Wondering why we don't have a DE recruited yet? Yup, that's here too. I'd also propose a daily open thread in this section for those crack-adled regulars who have the attention span of a ferret on crystal meth. Someone could just start it as "Open thread for July 1st, 2008", etc. first thing in the AM. And luckily for those of you who think we're all nuts, you don't have to wade through it. (And you're right btw- we're all completely bat shit insane. But in a good way.)
- BRIAN'S POSTS: Obviously the reason we're all here, to get a daily and sometimes hourly fix on all things Wolverine. As I understand it the comments section after these posts will most likely be topic based. As Brian has said it's currently open, but the above format would give us the option to self-govern and let him do less babysitting and more digging into the important things in life, like what Mike Barwis had for breakfast today, or what Mike Barwis wore today, or when Mike Barwis will officially turn our 5'6" WRs into laser cannon toting T-Rex's with 4.3 speed and a two story vertical.
So, what think you MGoPeople? Like I said, I'm just throwing it out there to see what sticks.
Full up. The Bama Sports Report says Ivan Matchett has made his grades and will enroll at Alabama shortly. Matchett is the 27th recruit to qualify -- two enrolled early -- and Alabama has now maxed out their freshman class. Three players will have to go by September, and there are still two guys trying to get eligible.
Hello, nurse. Anyone with an interest in viral marketing, branding, or boobs probably knows that JC Penney has been scrambling to control the fallout from a fake teen sex ad that was leaked onto the internet. But everyone's missed the hidden subplot except an alert reader: that chick is a Michigan fan. Check the shirt she's putting on/taking off/putting on:
Thousands of sixteen-year-olds across the country will now find themselves inexplicably fond of winged helmets.
Slightly lame. A large number of departures from the quasi-revenue sports of hockey and baseball:
- 2010 hockey recruit Jared Knight has signed with the OHL. This is not a huge deal since that class is two years from seeing the ice and Michigan will no doubt secure a suitable replacement, but Knight would have been a first-round OHL draft pick without his Michigan commitment and is a disappointing loss.
- 3B Adam Abraham, SS Jason Christian, and top reliever Mike Powers have signed MLB contracts and won't return for their senior years. Putnam is still wavering after being selected surprisingly late, though.
"It was the greatest thing I ever did professionally," said Bob Lipson, who created the show in 1975 and produced it for 33 years. "It's me. That's my identity. I absolutely loved it and worked with three great coaches. Nobody had it better than me. It was a great run."
So what's to become of new coach Rich Rodriguez's show this fall?
One thing is certain: it will not be called "Michigan Replay."
"I own the name," Lipson said. "It's not for sale."
Feed me, multiply. Stadium and Main emerges from a long slumber with some original reporting:
...the most important thing about the BTN is having access to all of its "overflow" feeds, so you can see all of the games (without having to worry about whether you'll receive your team's game). This is especially important for me, since I live in Washington, DC. So if I only get one BTN channel, my "regional coverage" might be the BTN Game of the Week (which may or may not include Michigan), or worse yet, Penn State (since they're the closest geographically). This short blurb from the Baltimore Sun makes it sound like the BTN will be available on Comcast's Sports Entertainment Package in cities like Baltimore (stated), DC, NYC, etc. (inferred), which was expected. But what about those overflow feeds?!
S&M (...errrr) goes on an intrepid journey to get a comment on the matter from Comcast, finally surfacing with:
We plan to review this situation week by week, and hope to bring our customers as many of these extra games as possible, based on level of interest and available channel capacity. BTN has told us that these details of this opportunity will not be available until August, and that they are quite subject to change, week to week, based on the game selections by ESPN, ABC and NBC.
Bleah. Sounds like this remains in question; head over to Stadium and Main for a fuller parsing of the above.
Snippet. Oddly, I'm an Edmonton Oilers fan (long story involving Chris Chelios and Mike Comrie), which sucks when it comes to actual on-ice accomplishments except during the Pronger year but is pretty killer when it comes to blogging. One of the best Oilers blogs out there -- albeit one of the worst named -- is MC79Hockey, and they've just wrapped up the main problem with the "access" frequently trotted out as the reason you shouldn't read the internet. Former Sioux defender Matt Greene just got traded:
Looking at Matt Greene first, he’s a fifth or sixth guy on a bad team. I had to laugh tonight as Jason Gregor was promoting his upcoming LIVE INTERVIEW WITH MATT GREENE and then explaining that he saw his upside as being a number three defenceman, because he can’t play on the PP. It was a stark illustration of the corrosive effect of access on truth telling.
Not everyone goes that route, of course, but the ones who don't tend to be Sharp/Mariotti types who Speak Truth To Power in a super-annoying way. Access is a double-edged sword.
(Also re: Greene: " I’ll always remember him, but mostly because I went to school with the guy who hit him with his truck." ZING!)
- The bug where your username was randomly replaced by someone else's is fixed according to a few readers.
- I am aware that the site gets shoved down the page in IE 6 and am attempting to fix it; give me a week or so.
- I'm also trying to fix the flyout menus showing up under flash content.
- I know the tabs look weird for some, but it's been really hard to track down why because it's been intermittent.
- The recruiting board has been ported over. It now lives under "useful stuff" on the nav menu.
- I am not enthralled with everything yet but I wanted to get the site live so I could spend July working out kinks instead of August or September. If you have suggestions I am open to them.
Update: Forgot one bug in the queue: anonymous comments are apparently getting registered -- they bump up the comment count -- but not displayed.